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Italian Tempeh with Stuffed Zucchini


This meal works well when served along with a side salad. Feel free to experiment with different herbs or spices in the tempeh dish. Use of organic ingredients is advised.


1 pkg
tempeh (8 ounces)
5 tbsp
olive oil (divided)
onion, chopped (divided)
4 clove
garlic, chopped (divided)
1 can
diced tomatoes (28 ounces)
1⁄4 cup
plus 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped (divided)
2 tbsp
fresh oregano (divided)
2 tbsp
fresh thyme (divided)
  to taste
salt and pepper
1⁄2 cup
quinoa, rinsed and drained
1 can
filtered water
2 large
1 bunch
fresh spinach leaves, chopped
4 tbsp
Parmesan cheese


To make the Italian Tempeh: Cut the tempeh into squares. In a large saute pan, add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Over medium heat, saute 1 onion until soft and translucent. Add 2 tablespoons garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add the diced tomatoes and tempeh. Cover and simmer over medium heat for 30 minutes. If there is too much liquid, remove the top and allow sauce to reduce for 5 to 8 minutes. Add in 1/4 cup basil, 1 tablespoon each of oregano and thyme, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

To make the Stuffed Zucchini: Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium saucepan add quinoa with 1 cup of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and allow the quinoa to simmer for 15 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Set aside.

Slice each zucchini in half and scrape out the pulp and seeds with a spoon. Reserve the pulp and seeds in a separate dish.

Place the zucchini halves face down on a lightly oiled baking sheet and drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the zucchini halves. Place the zucchini halves in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until zucchini is soft.

In a saute pan on medium heat, add remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add 1 small onion and saute until translucent or until the onion browns a bit. Add remaining 2 tablespoons garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add the reserved zucchini pulp and spinach leaves and saute until the spinach is wilted. Turn off the heat and mix in remaining tablespoon each of basil, thyme and oregano, along with the cooked quinoa. Stir and season with salt and pepper to taste.

When the zucchini is ready, turn the halves over and fill each halve with the quinoa mixture. Sprinkle each zucchini halve with 1 tablespoon of Parmesan cheese. Return to the oven and bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until the cheese is brown on top.

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green zucchini with yellow summer squash
SourceOriginal recipe by Julie Usdavin. Copyright 2009.
Prep time
15 minutes
Cooking time
30 minutes
Total time
45 minutes